Friday, December 4, 2009

Little Cabin on the Ridge


The Bear Ridge Nudist Retreat & Meditation Cottage is finally nearing completion.

May 2001 I picked the location and started building this tiny 8 by 10 foot structure on the top of Bear Ridge. The small cabin is situated in an area that cannot be seen from any road...maximum privacy but with great views. Unfortunately the privacy came with a price.

Everything had to be carried from the road up the hill to the ridge. So this little building project was back shelved half finished until I got the big cabin at the bottom of the hill livable. Axel and I spent many nights in the small unfinished cabin that first summer. It was cold and rainy all summer and the coyotes would come right up to the tarp covered walls and sniff us out. It was an adventure but not a priority so it sat there for the last eight and a half years waiting for me.

Late this summer I started packing the building supplies up the hill to finish project.

Originally there was an unfinished barn roof on the structure and you slept on the current roof. But this roof style fell out of favor when the unsheathed rafters fell off the building. Deciding this was divine intervention and not wanting to carry all the roofing plywood up the hill I kept the flat roof.

The upside is that the flat roof is a great star/ufo gazing platform. The view from the roof is fairly well unobstructed while still lending a degree of privacy. A cap installed around the top of the cabin is where the deck railings will be attached. Rolled roofing is install on the decking it will probably leak really bad but that is nothing new.

The two big windows were originally installed in the big cabin but were replaced when I added the front addition. So they were packed up the hill along with the big and very heavy sliding glass door I picked up at ReStore in Colorado Springs for $20. The sliding glass door is orientated to the south. 

Power is generated with an old 80 watt solar panel charging a 115 amp hour battery through a 10 amp charge controller. There is a 400 watt inverter that the laptop or LED lights can be plugged into. Real simple and plenty of power for a long evenings work.

The cabin is heated with a Big Buddy propane heater attached to a 20 pound bottle. Of course the big south side sliding glass windows provide plenty of heat during the day easily keeping the well insulated cottage between 60 and 80 degrees. The temperature is maintained into the evening with the Big Buddy running on medium even on the coldest nights.

I was wanting a really small wood stove possibly a military tent heater but decided that there was not enough floorspace to install the unit.  If I build on I will consider this but until then the propane will do just fine.

I picked up an old futon frame and mattress at the local junk store for about $10. Very comfortable for sky gazing and folds out into a cozy but adequate full size bed. Covers and pillows are stored in a couple of plastic bins located on a shelf above the futon. The bins are protection in case a mouse happens to get into the cabin.


A small fold down desk is built into the wall under the north window. Great view for computer work or cooking. There are a couple of small stools that work as desk chairs or just additional seating. The stools are hollow cubes that are also used for storage.

The place still needs the top railing installed, inside finish work plus more shelving and a small deck built in front of the sliding glass doors but it is comfortable and livable as is.

I am using the place as a getaway when the dogs are driving me crazy and also as a little guest house.

The next big addition for Bear Ridge is a small 4 by 7 foot steam hut located about 20 feet south of the little cabin. Steam will be produced with an old turkey roaster, pressure cooker, assorted valves and hoses plus a small albino dwarf named Fredrick who will bring the water up the hill (I got him real cheap on CraigsList...I love CraigsList).

8 comments:

Did it MY way said...

When do I get on the guest list. That little piece of heaven would suit me just fine. What a view. You are a lucky man.

See Ya

HermitJim said...

Beautiful view, my friend!

Mayberry said...

That's awesome! A retreat away from your retreat. And you got a great sense of humor man...

Sixbears said...

Now why is it that just about all the guys I know would love a little cabin like that and almost none of the gals. My lovely wife is an exception, but that's why she's my wife

BigBear said...

chris I will swing by and take a look here in the next few days.

BigBear said...

chris I drove by today it is a very nice place I love the view. Are you going to do grid power or solar?

I am deleting your other post I don't want you having any unwanted visitors.

Anonymous said...

hi, really enjoy your site; thought I'd sahare this link to a factory that makes really small woodstoves,http://www.marinestove.com/index.htm. thanks

BigBear said...

Thanks for that link those are nice little stoves. I didn't say this in the article but one of the other reasons I chose not to go with the wood stove is that I use the roof for star gazing and didn't want the chimney and smoke getting in the way.

As a matter of fact I will be up there tonight watching the Geminid Meteor shower.